ABC Fatal Contact: Bird Flu in America Movie As A Preview of Pandemic
May 8th 2006
Marlton, NJ - Although an upcoming ABC movie on the bird flu virus
is a Hollywood tale, a real outbreak may not be far removed from the
reel version airing May 9, notes one readiness expert.
"Viruses mutate and if this one does it will join the human flu virus,
change its genetic code and emerge as a new and deadly flu that can
spread through the air from human to human. If the virus does mutate, it
does not necessarily mean it will be as deadly to people as it is to
birds. But private citizens, the government, businesses, schools and
hospitals must prepare for the worst," says Stephen Guarino, CEO of
Global Protection in Marlton, N.J.
The avian influenza virus currently is confined to birds. It can,
however, be transmitted to humans, but only if people come into direct
contact with the droppings and excretions of infected birds.
If there is an outbreak of bird flu among the U.S. population, some
scientists predict a worst-case scenario of 20 million Americans
affected, two million dead, and schools and businesses shut down to
prevent the spread of the disease.
"Fatal Contact: Bird Flu in America," which will air on ABC Tuesday, May
9, tells the story of an avian flu outbreak in the United States, the
people affected by it and those trying to stop it.
Guarino believes that employers and consumers should heed the warnings
and prepare their businesses and homes should the avian flu switch from
posing a terrible hazard to birds to becoming a real threat to humans.
"If H5N1 virus were to gain the capacity to spread easily from person to
person, a worldwide outbreak of disease could begin. No one can predict
when a pandemic might occur. However, experts from around the world are
watching the H5N1 situation in Asia and Europe very closely and are
preparing for the possibility that the virus may begin to spread more
easily from person to person," says Guarino.
"Get ready now in the event of an outbreak. Many employees might opt to
stay at home and the ones who do go to work will need the appropriate
protection to minimize their risk of exposure to the disease."
Some corporations, he reports, are considering budgets of $50 million to
$200 million for gear and equipment to protect their employees. "Many
companies are ensuring that they have large quantities of respirators,
disinfectants, rubber gloves and similar products readily available in
large quantities and others are preparing work-at-home plans," says
Guarino. "Families should have some personal protection equipment on
Guarino, whose company sells protective kits to industry and consumers
www.birdflu123.com, advises families to look for respirators that
meet Centers for Disease Control and Protection guidelines for
tuberculosis exposure control and are approved by the National Institute
for Occupational Safety and Health.
Global Protection offers first responder protective gear that includes
protective suits, gas masks and a variety of equipment used for protection
against chemical, biological and nuclear threats. U.S. government agencies,
police and fire first responders, companies and individuals rely on Global
Protection to provide the leading products to protect against potential
chemical warfare agents, biological warfare, and terrorist threats such as
anthrax, smallpox, and nerve gas.
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